A Guide to Study Nursing in the USA as a Foreigner

Posted on October 7, 2022 By Mathew Berg

A nursing degree might be a good option for an overseas student searching for a secure and satisfying profession in the USA. The good news is that there are numerous nursing programs in the US and various possible career tracks and subfields. Read on if you are considering studying nursing in the US as a foreigner.

A Guide to Studying Nursing in the USA

A nursing degree may be the appropriate choice if you desire a profession where you can make a difference and work directly with patients. Here's everything you need to consider to study nursing in the USA and apply for your CES nursing report.

Step 1— Know Your Career Options

Nursing in the USA for foreigners allows you to customize your education and career to your goals and passions. Most registered nurses work in hospitals, but there are many opportunities for those who study nursing to go into specialized sectors. Emergency care, obstetrics, intensive care, and oncology are just a few of the specialties open to hospital nurses.

The education will also prepare you for various rewarding careers, including patient care, research, and specialized consulting. Many nurses also prefer to move between different floors and departments to broaden their nursing experience.

When it comes to the community’s general health, public health nurses engage with communities like schools and local groups to make a difference. They offer counsel and training in illness avoidance, child care, nutrition, and more.  

You can also consider becoming an office nurse. These registered nurses provide patient care outside a hospital setting, such as at a physician’s office, a clinic, or a surgery facility. Lastly, hospice care nurses care for terminally ill patients in their homes or hospice facilities.

Step 2— Understand Prerequisites for Nursing in the USA for Foreigners

International students intending to study nursing at a university may encounter a variety of admissions criteria. You must have completed high school or further education to study nursing in the United States. It will be a great advantage if you are good at chemistry and biology.

You must pass both the GPA and SATs. English proficiency is also important. You must score 6.5 in IELTS or 90+ in TOEFL. Finally, you must take the HESI/TEAR admissions test. 

In addition to academic requirements, students studying abroad in the United States must demonstrate financial means. This is also a significant component that determines your acceptance or rejection. In the US, nursing tuition typically costs 11,000 USD or more per year for public institutions and 40,000 USD or more per year for private schools.

We recommend you work with an expert nursing school admissions consultant to maximize your chances of acceptance at your target programs!

Step 3— Choose the Right US Nursing Program in the USA

There are several programs for studying nursing in the USA for foreigners. Once you have successfully completed the program, you will require academic credential evaluation services to evaluate and verify your educational records to attain your nursing license. 

The CES nursing report provides a  comprehensive evaluation of credentials gained at different levels of foreign nursing education. Here are a few options that you can consider based on your previous education and future career goals.

LPN or LVN Programs

LPN and LVN programs are for licensed practical nurses and vocational nurses. LPN/LVN programs are offered at various universities around the United States. Typically, these programs do not require prior courses. Nonetheless, some colleges require a minimum TOEFL, SAT, or ACT score. To obtain a practicing license, students must pass a nationwide examination.

BSN Program

BSN is a nursing bachelor's degree. This degree requires four years of study and is available at colleges and institutions around the United States. International students are drawn to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree because it offers a broad range of employment opportunities and a good wage. You can also consider an Intensive BSN Program. Often referred to as secondary programs, these expedited BSNs are designed for individuals who already possess a bachelor's degree. This 12- to 18-month curriculum is the quickest route to becoming a registered nurse. Even though these programs are extremely competitive and demanding, many overseas students choose them.

ADN Program

ADN is equivalent to a nursing associate's degree. This curriculum will run either fifteen months or two years. It is often offered in community colleges and frequently needs a number of prerequisites. Typically, the ADN program emphasizes technical nursing abilities. Therefore, upon completion of this program, you will be able to give therapy, emotional support to patients and their families, and counseling. Students enrolled in the ADN program must pass the National Board Licensing Exam to receive a nursing license.

MSN Program

This program is a master of science in the nursing degree that incorporates a number of advanced nursing concentrations into a single term. These specialized programs may mix majors, including newborn nursing, women's health nursing, nurse education, etc.

CRNA Program

A Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist program is accredited as a professional qualification of the highest caliber. The curriculum lasts between one and two years. Students participating in the CRNA program will be instructed on anesthetic procedures, test theory, and practical application.

The Bottom Line

Nursing students have access to several options. Plus, there are innumerable opportunities in the fields of nursing in the USA for foreigners. Therefore, if you wish to study nursing in the USA as a foreign student, it is advisable to do your research to find the best option that aligns with your personal and professional goals.

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